A professional sports scout helps to discover and sign new talent for professional sports teams. Tasks performed by scouts include conducting research on players who may be prospective team members, viewing players to assess their skills, and recording athletes' performances for reference and to show to other members of their organization. They also interview coaches and fellow athletes, as well as work to convince promising athletes to sign with the team they represent.
Professional sports scouts must have excellent knowledge of the sport and team they represent, and they must be skilled in assessing the skills and potential of young players. The ability to answer athletes' questions and explain the benefits of the team being scouted for are also essential. Strong communication skills - in person, over the phone and over email - are needed, as is the ability to build relationships with organizations such as colleges, universities and high schools where prospective team members play.
Previous scouting experience is often required or preferred for professional sports scout positions. Often, these professionals have played the sport at the collegiate or professional level. They may also have coaching experience. Some sports scouts are required to go through training and certification from the league for which they are scouting.